Magazine article New Internationalist

Challenge to Walmart

Magazine article New Internationalist

Challenge to Walmart

Article excerpt

The world's largest private-sector employer and biggest US corporation faces renewed workplace unrest. Workers who founded OUR Walmart two years ago are promising protests to coincide with Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving and the busiest shopping day of the year. They will demand a living wage, affordable healthcare, stable work schedules and an end to retaliation against their members.

OUR Walmart hopes to build on the success of last year, when Black Friday saw 500 workers walk off the job and join 30,000 demon- strators across 47 states. Employees blockaded the road to a store in Los Angeles for two hours before being arrested as 1,000 supporters looked on. Dramatic actions such as this gained traction in both traditional and social media, which has helped connect workers, dispersed across the US, who are brave enough to stand up to their employer.

Actions carried on throughout the year. In June, 100 workers joined a two-week strike and embarked on bus journeys across the US, echoing the civil rights movement's 'Freedom Riders'. …

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